Activision shows off next-gen visuals

R&D staffers at Call of Duty publisher show off series of images and video depicting what next-generation games could look like.

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Today during a GDC panel, Activision technical director Jorge Jimenez offered a glimpse into what next-generation characters could look like.

The developer's technical talk focused on the processes of creating realistic-looking characters without reaching the uncanny valley. Jimenez explained that the product of better visuals will be the capacity to tell stories with greater emotional impact.

The images are the result of years of work, Jimenez explained, though he's not satisfied yet. He said future work needs to focus on creating more realistic hair, teeth, and eyebrows.

In addition, Activision research and development director Javier von der Pahlen showed off a next-gen character animation video during the talk. The video (below) is rendered in real-time on current video card hardware.

The images and video reflect research and development initiatives that Activision is exploring and do not represent actual game assets, the developers said.

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Discussion

408 comments
Scarshi
Scarshi

Introducing the *NEW* Avatar 2.0! Now with 2 extra wrinkles and bonus wart! AMAZING!

lawfrye
lawfrye

Not on a console you wont...

Lamesy
Lamesy

Wow, a close up a face. Because we really need more improvements in the close-up-of-a-face sector. I totally agree with @LesserAngel . I want to see a variety of different high res textures on a lot of different models, in motion, properly rendered on screen at one time.

tonet666
tonet666

the skin looks very nice, and the eyes too.

ernelson1976
ernelson1976

The voice doesn't quite match up with the video, but it's not horrible. There are moments of uncanny valley here. Mostly, though, it seems decent enough. I have doubts that we'll see anything quite this advanced in any games. It's good to know they're making some progress.

Agelu
Agelu

How in the hell you can "showoff next-gen visuals" with 640x480 screenies like these...

marvelx3
marvelx3

Look people. Read the disclaimer at the bottom of the images......not actual gameplay. Activision will never produce this kind of work to run on actual gameplays. I swear if the next gen consoles won't run graphics of this quality on gameplay, I will never buy any more consoles for as long as I live.

rann89
rann89

The only games I can see looking like this are small games like Call of Duty where nothing is really going on in a 10x10 map except for people running around.

Kermyt
Kermyt

Looks awesome but no matter what they do with the blemishes, the wrinkles, the blackheads, the dimples, the eyes.....the TEETH always look **&% ha ha

BlueFlameBat
BlueFlameBat

Once again, they show renders of wrinkled old people to demonstrate their capabilities.

mischiefmeerkat
mischiefmeerkat

looks nuts, but wait until you see their next gen DRM

Petman8246
Petman8246

When they stop making games on what is pretty much the id Tech 3 engine, then I'll believe that they can do this.

LesserAngel
LesserAngel

Faces in a static enviroment, amazing... When they can get those kind of visuals with all the background stuff going on, I'll be impressed. There's more to a game than just one character's face. What'd impress me even more is a good physics engine.

vannacut
vannacut

but are they gonna be able to be animated as realistic as well?

kirk2n25
kirk2n25

We will see these kind of graphics in movies long before we see them in games. Studios are already buying up the rights to the likenesses of old stars like Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presely to make new movies with them.

Fenixx
Fenixx

Remember before the PS3 and 360 launched, that developers were trying to show off what games might look like also by giving us detailed realistic images?  We never got those.  There's a big difference between sitting around and creating images of what you think you can do, and actually creating the games and finding out what you're capable of doing.  I have no doubt that the next systems will be able to pump out some nice looking stuff, but don't get your hopes up for ultra realistic people just yet.

psycho75
psycho75

This looks incredible but I hope ultra realistic graphics don't kill the artistic value of games.

dawnofhero
dawnofhero

They might as well have taken photos if it looks this tangible.

jark888
jark888

Do deliver those visuals, and we'll be thankful.

Navardo95
Navardo95

And yes like someone said...Warfighter is a prime example of how good graphics won't save a garbage game..if all the attention is put to the graphics...I fear we will get games buggier than Skyrim and AC3 combined and campaign length as big as 45 mins....

These beautiful visuals are more then welcomed but if its going to have a bad effect on the gameplay then I don't need it...

Navardo95
Navardo95

And we all know how innovative the next COD and BF game will be...


joshflavell
joshflavell

I wonder when we'll get to the point where graphics are so realistic that killing someone in game could give you PTSD.  

Like, when its seamlessly "real-life" quality, won't action games basically be snuff movies? Or do you think you'd be able to still rationalise it as "just a game" like we do nowadays...

boarwar
boarwar

low def screenshots lolol

gamergath
gamergath

Creepy... This realism technology has just surfaced at the right time. PS4 & next-gen Xbox, we are waiting for this visuals to be in he confines of our home. ;) 

febrymaulana11
febrymaulana11

I don't understand why people always want a realistic graphic... 

IanNottinghamX
IanNottinghamX

So Im supposed to be impressed that Cod will be higher definition and detailed models? is this the big jump??? From 1 Steaming Hot Turd to a Steaming vaporing, effervescent, Glowing hot turd???? If this is what people want to play then count me out......

cubachino
cubachino

"images and video reflect research and development initiatives that Activision is exploring" in other words we are just trying to get you excited about the next xbox and PS4. But the truth is we will not be increasing our production budget to create those beautiful visuals. But please feel free to believe we will.

alexbartle
alexbartle

I dont think COD will be running at 60fps if it looks like that!

Elann2008
Elann2008

Haven't we learned that graphics doesn't make a game better?  MOH: Warfighter and many others have proven this.  

LemonCreed
LemonCreed

@marvelx3 Then you best get ready to find another form of entertainment. Next gen consoles will never have this type of graphical power. The tech is just not there. What your getting is old 2010 pc parts stuffed into a plastic box. If you want this type of eye candy you'll have to build yourself an up to date gaming PC.

mr_azim
mr_azim

@rann89 Are you kidding?  MP is the place where graphics get an anal-probing to make up for all the bandwidth channeling.  You'll never see this in any MP.

marcopolo426
marcopolo426

@psycho75 This is Activision. Artistic value of their games is less than the plastic wrappers of the box they come in. 

jecomans
jecomans

@joshflavell Movies already have real people realistically killing real people. Be it bloody faces and swelling in Fight Club, or limbs and entrails in Saving Private Ryan (too name a few), there is plenty of disturbingly realistic content out there. To be a snuff film/game it would need to consist of torturing someone. What you mentioned is essentially an interactive/choose-your-own-adventure version of Battle: Los Angeles, or whatever. 

I'm sure some gamers will find it too uncomfortable to play, just as many people are put off an otherwise interesting film if it has strong scenes of violence. In general though it needs no more rationalisation than Rambo. 

The bigger point, perhaps, is what anti-gaming lobbyist will say about its influence on copy-cat behaviour and desensitization, and how that will effect censorship. I can't imagine that crowd is going anywhere soon.    

gamergath
gamergath

@febrymaulana11 Cause realism is the next level of enjoying games, do you want to see pixelated faces on you next-gen console? hmm.

milomell
milomell

@Rhys4Peace look at the environment in crysis again and report back to me, as i said before cry engine 3 is not better than cry engine 2

psycho75
psycho75

@fizzledwarDon't get me wrong, i like beautiful graphics as much as the next guy but i think it will be very boring if every game looks like a film...if developers do manage to maintain some level of design diversity,  i will be ok with it.

Rhys4Peace
Rhys4Peace

@milomell @Rhys4Peace sorry for the late reply :P
but anyway. i have. i have looked at both, with maxed everything (except for AA in crysis 3, got that at smaa 2) and crysis 3 looks phenomenally better than crysis 1. i played both to completion, as well, and the only area that crysis 1 tops crysis 3 in is animation. the death animations of the koreans are a TINY bit better than those of the CELL. 

jecomans
jecomans

@psycho75 @fizzledwar I don't think for a second that suddenly every developer will just decide to create stories for photo-realistic humans/aliens(?) just because it's available. Amazingly realistic visuals for film have been around for a long time, and cartoons/anime are more popular than ever. Crazy artistry is everywhere in the film industry despite the realism that can be achieved if desired, so why would the games industry be any different?